Syria

Assad Regime and Russia Reject Claims of Chemical Weapon Use in Syria

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(CNN) — Claims and counterclaims came thick and fast Friday in response to the White House's declaration hours earlier that it believes the Syrian government has crossed a "red line" in using chemical weapons against rebels.

That conclusion—declared for the first time Thursday—is prompting the United States to increase the "scale and scope" of its support for the opposition, the White House said, although officials stopped short of saying it will put weapons in the hands of rebels.

The U.S. report won backing from the UK government Friday—but Syria and its allies in Moscow quickly sought to cast its integrity into doubt.

The Syrian foreign ministry accused Washington of releasing "a statement full of lies regarding the use of chemical weapons in Syria," according to a statement on state TV.